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Race report

NASCAR Cup Richmond: Larson sees off Hendrick team-mate Berry for victory

Kyle Larson led a 1-2 finish for Hendrick Motorsports in the NASCAR Cup race at Richmond Raceway, with team-mate Josh Berry taking a career-best finish in second.

Race winner Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro

The fight for victory sparked into life after Noah Gragson slammed the outside wall, forcing the sixth caution of the race, which saw all the lead-lap cars pit with Martin Truex Jr retaining the lead off pitroad.

With 55 laps to go, several cars started making what they hoped would be their final pitstops, with Byron the first frontrunner to do so. Race leader Truex followed soon after, pitting with 48 laps to go.

Berry, Michael McDowell and Todd Gilliland were the only ones to commit to the no-stop strategy to the finish.

William Byron took the lead from team-mate Berry with 33 laps to go, but just as the battle for the race lead started heating up, a caution flew for a spinning Tyler Reddick.

Following the opportunity to make a late pitstop, Larson led Berry out of the pits from Truex and Byron, but on the restart Christopher Bell pitched Byron into a spin, while Truex struggled on scuffed tyres and tumbled down the order.

While the Hendrick duo of Larson and Berry got away, Ross Chastain moved up into third, but nobody could catch Larson who took victory by 1.5 seconds from team-mate Berry - who is standing in for the injured Chase Elliott.

The victory is the 20th of Larson's NASCAR Cup career and his first of the 2023 season.

He becomes the sixth different winner in the first seven races, earning the Hendrick squad its third win of the year.

Race winner Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro

Race winner Kyle Larson, Hendrick Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro

Photo by: John Harrelson / NKP / Motorsport Images

"It's really cool," said Larson. "We've been close to winning a couple. William [Byron] has been extremely good this year. It was going to be between probably him, the #19 [Truex], us, and the #20 [Bell] was really good. So just things worked out.

"My pitcrew had a great stop. So shout out to Brandon Johnson. He is our jackman. He just turned 30 today. Our spotter, Tyler Monn, he turned 30 today. Great day for them guys."

Chastain held on to third at the finish ahead of Bell and Kevin Harvick, with McDowell taking his best result of the season in sixth place.

Defending NASCAR champion Joey Logano got home in seventh in front of points leader Alex Bowman, as Ty Gibbs and Brad Keselowski completed the top 10 as Truex just missed out in 11th.

Stage-one winner Byron was unable to recover from his late spin and came home in 24th place.

NASCAR Cup Richmond  - Race Results (400 laps)

Cla Driver Manufacturer Gap Interval
1 United States Kyle Larson Chevrolet    
2 Josh Berry Chevrolet 1.535 1.535
3 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 2.171 0.636
4 United States Christopher Bell Toyota 2.464 0.293
5 United States Kevin Harvick Ford 2.984 0.520
6 United States Michael McDowell Ford 4.822 1.838
7 United States Joey Logano Ford 5.167 0.345
8 United States Alex Bowman Chevrolet 6.242 1.075
9 Ty Gibbs Toyota 6.645 0.403
10 United States Brad Keselowski Ford 7.346 0.701
11 United States Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 7.628 0.282
12 United States Chase Briscoe Ford 8.044 0.416
13 United States Aric Almirola Ford 8.529 0.485
14 United States Kyle Busch Chevrolet 9.115 0.586
15 United States Todd Gilliland Ford 9.574 0.459
16 United States Tyler Reddick Toyota 9.658 0.084
17 Chandler Smith Chevrolet 9.799 0.141
18 United States Ryan Preece Ford 10.499 0.700
19 United States Harrison Burton Ford 10.891 0.392
20 United States Denny Hamlin Toyota 11.368 0.477
21 United States Corey Lajoie Chevrolet 12.082 0.714
22 United States Bubba Wallace Toyota 12.784 0.702
23 Mexico Daniel Suarez Chevrolet 13.571 0.787
24 United States William Byron Chevrolet 14.000 0.429
25 United States Austin Dillon Chevrolet 1 Lap 1 Lap
26 United States Ryan Blaney Ford 1 Lap 0.371
27 United States A.J. Allmendinger Chevrolet 1 Lap 0.610
28 United States Austin Cindric Ford 1 Lap 0.751
29 United States Justin Haley Chevrolet 1 Lap 0.057
30 United States Chris Buescher Ford 2 Laps 1 Lap
31 United States Erik Jones Chevrolet 2 Laps 0.440
32 United States Ty Dillon Chevrolet 2 Laps 4.507
33 Anthony Alfredo Chevrolet 4 Laps 2 Laps
34 United States Cody Ware Ford 5 Laps 1 Lap
35 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Chevrolet 16 Laps 11 Laps
36 United States J.J. Yeley Ford 17 Laps 1 Lap
37 United States Noah Gragson Chevrolet 97 Laps 80 Laps

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